Venom: Let There Be Carnage – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2021 film Venom: Let There Be Carnage.

Story

The story was simple to a fault, with more time spent on Venom and Brock fighting than anything else.

What story there was, was as predictable as the first, maybe more so. Again, this felt like a bad 90’s script with modern special effects.

Score: 0

Characters

I honestly can’t stand Eddie. He’s a complete fool. Venom isn’t much better. They’re at their best when they snip at each other but still work as a team, and we didn’t see much of that.

Woody Harrelson and Naomie Harris are fantastic, over-the-top, villains. They are tragic and cheesy and wonderful. There was a little too much time spent telling us they were evil vs showing us.

Carnage was super boring.

Again, these actors are way too good for the roles.

Score: 0.5

Dialogue

“Oh shit! He’s a red one.” and “Those two need couples counselling.” were the best lines. Beyond that, it was pretty bad.

Score: 0

Visuals and Music

The special effects, cinematography, and directing were impressive. This movie looked good.

The music was excellent.

Score: 1

Fun

I watched this on my own and it wasn’t fun. I think it might be more fun with friends mocking it.

Score: 0

Overall

The acting, directing, music and visuals are spectacular. None of that saves the movie from a terrible script, unsympathetic characters, and dialogue that would feel cheap in a bad 90’s action movie.

Final Score: 1.5 Stars out of 5

Things I Didn’t Know About Pain

Hello,

I thought I understood what pain does. I mean I have two tattoos, been scratched by a baby, and am really clumsy. Joking aside, I’ve had pain before. I’ve broken my ankle, sprained both several times, pulled a muscle in my leg, and have had a neck injury.

However, there are things I didn’t understand about long term pain and how it eats at your mental health and quality of life. Three things have really surprised me.

First, I’ve noticed that my anxiety, executive dysfunction, agoraphobia, RSD, and aversion to change have all been really hard to deal with the past few months. It wasn’t until last week after a stressful work day (that shouldn’t have been that bad) that I realized that the constant pain is amplifying the rest of my issues.

Second, I’ve found the oscillation between hope and despair to be really exhausting mentally and physically. From worrying that the pain and loss of mobility in my arms is permanent and only going to get worse to making plans for when this will be over and I’m back to normal. Hopefully this will get better once I’m allowed to see a doctor.

Third, I had never thought of how the pain would lead to a lack of sleep. It wakes me up two to five times a night and I don’t sleep well when I do. On really bad nights, despite the Voltaren and Advil, I lie awake and barely sleep. I don’t think I’ve slept more than 2-3 hours straight since last June.

The combination of the three means that I’m constantly tired, everything feels like a large task, and life feels more dramatic.

The worst part is feeling like I’m failing myself and my family.

I’m supposed to hear from WSIB this week with a decision on my care. Hopefully, things will get better after that.

Sorry for the sad post. No help needed, just love.

Stay Safe and Be Kind,

Éric

The Swoonie Awards are open!!

But only until January 30th!

If anyone would like to nominate our book:

Assassins! Accidental Matchmakers by Jen and Éric Desmarais

It is eligible in the following categories:

  • Paranormal/Urban Fantasy Romance
  • Best Cover (add “art by @pinkpiggy93 ” to your nomination in this category)

Please and thank you!

Happy nominating, everyone!

https://www.theswoonawards.com/2023/01/16/the-2022-swoon-awards-nominations-round/

Strange World – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2022 film Strange World.

Story

The story mirrors the old pulp comics and stories, but with a modern twist. This felt like it would fit well with Treasure Planet and Atlantis.

The story definitely follows Disney’s new story structure of not having a villain and dealing with family/generational trauma.

I find that a lot of the screen time is wasted on the AMAZING visuals and not enough on the characters themselves.

Score: 0.5

Characters

I liked the characters, but the focus moved around a lot and the emotions were rushed for the actions. Splat was a perfect Disney sidekick, the mom was amazing, and Alan Tudyk should not be playing pilots any more.

The three male leads were stubborn and their changes of heart were nice but not heart-wrenching.

Score: 0.5

Dialogue

The banter and fights between the characters was great and the parent’s interactions were great.

Loved the pulpy intro narration.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

This was an absolute joy to watch visually. The world was both amazing and fascinating. The camera angles and style were just perfect.

The music was very well done with a wonderful heroic score.

Score: 1

Fun

This movie was exciting, thought provoking, and lots of fun. The whole family loved it. My wife, who has a background in biology, noticed a few really cool visuals early on and we then spent a lot of the movie pointing out inspiration for the world.

I look forward to seeing this one again.

Score: 1

Overall

A family drama with a spectacular world pulled straight from older pulp science fiction. This movie is stunning, clever, and a lot of fun.

Final Score: 4 Stars out of 5

The Suns of War – Prologue (Serial Story)

Hello Readers,

This year for the serial story I’m going to be continuing an old story from 2016. I’ve edited and added information.

Enjoy!


Prologue | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Chapter 10 | Chapter 11 | Chapter 12


Prologue: Sailing the Rubble of Galaxies 

“Nice of them to design these cells with portholes,” admired former security commander, Nessa Muldune. It seemed like a strange waste of outer hull but she appreciated being able to see the stars.

“Shut up, traitor,” sneered her jailer, his whiskers twitching with smugness. Lieutenant Alfred’s disdain was a relief after the months of him awkwardly hitting on her. “We’ll be at New Mars soon and you’ll get what’s coming to you.”

The United Martian Empire (UME) Camlann was a brand new Starcruiser class ship, with a crew of twenty-three. Her mission was to explore the outer edges of the galaxy for resources that could help in their war against the Ares Republic.

“Alfred, take a walk.” Doctor Anson’s commanding tone ensured he knew it wasn’t a suggestion.

Waiting until they were alone, Nessa said, “Peri, if you’re here to tell me how much you’ve always hated me, you’re an hour late for the parade.” Her tail wanted to tuck between her legs as she remembered the half dozen crew that had come to berate and insult their former commander.

The doctor’s hairless face broke into a smile. “You’re an idiot Muldune, but I don’t hate you. I agree with what you did, but they expect us medical types to be Peacers.” It was one of the worst insults for a Martian to be called a Peacer. Peace would only happen when the Empire’s enemies were all dead. Any other opinion was heresy.

The Doctor shook their head in either annoyance or amusement. Nessa couldn’t tell, humans were hard to read, and added, “I’ve looked over the logs and I’m going to testify for you at your court-martial.”

“Don’t be an idiot. It’ll just get you thrown into whatever hole they put me.”

“Doubt it. There are perks to one of my fathers being an Admiral. I’m not the only one who thinks the Captain went too far this time.”

Lifting her hand, Nessa said, “No. Shut up. Until we’re safely in dock on New Mars, I don’t want to hear about it and I don’t think you should talk about it either.” Pointing at her furry ears and then the walls, Nessa added, “What you’re saying could be taken as the M word and you know how the Captain doesn’t like that word.” The last person to hint at mutiny had been spaced without a trial. Her multiple commendations, stellar military record, and Red Star of Honour were the only reason Nessa wasn’t sleeping with meteors.

”Fine, but you’re not alone and I wanted you to know that.” Peri smiled again and turned to leave.

“Thank you, old friend.” They’d served together since Nessa’s first tour of duty when she was barely out of kittenhood at fifteen.

Alfred strode back in and started saying crude things about the Doctor. Nessa ignored him; doing the same thing she’d done countless times since she’d been put in here. She went over the incident to see what she could have done differently.

They were pushing the limits of known space when they’d gotten a distress call. It was ancient code. When they arrived at the coordinates they found three ships; an Ares Bird-of-Prey, an ancient frigate and a third ship they’d never seen before.

The ancient frigate was giving off the distress code. It must have been five hundred or more years old. Nessa’s first mistake was to suggest that the frigate might have star-maps that could lead them back to Earth. The Captain had laughed at her and mocked her for her silly superstitions. He was one of the many Martians who were convinced all sentient life had evolved on New Mars.

They’d hailed the Aresian ship and received no answer, but when they hailed the unknown ship, it answered with what sounded like a riddle.

Myrddin searches for Arthur

The message repeated itself as if it were a recording. When the mysterious ship opened its gunports, the Captain had ordered her to open fire. She hesitated and she still didn’t know why. It was like she froze. The Captain had thrown her to the side and fired on the ship himself.

It had done nothing, their weapons didn’t even leave a mark on the ship. The Captain was furious and ordered her to fire on the Aresian ship. Their stardrive was powered by antimatter and the explosion should wipe out all three ships.

That’s when she’d ruined her career by saying, “Sir, we can’t. If those aliens are powerful enough to take a full blast from our ion cannons, we need to get access to their tech, not blow it up.” And she’d made it worse by adding, “Not to mention that the frigate could hold the key to finding our original home world.”

“New Mars is our home world, you Peacer trash. Take the traitor to the brig.” To the security guards’ credit, they both looked uncomfortable jailing their commanding officer. The captain had blown up the Aresian ship and the frigate with one hit. The alien ship had given off one unintelligible message before it exploded. The Camlann barely made it out on time, despite its cutting edge stardrive.

She was now on her way to a court martial. If she was lucky, a life sentence on some mining asteroid. If she was unlucky, she’d be put in the Colosseum for sport.

Nessa felt the telltale wobble of the Camlann’s stardrive powering down. She was excited, despite the situation, to see the planets of the New Mars system; the crown jewels of the empire.

The ship shook violently and all she could see out the porthole was an asteroid field. Something was wrong.

“Brace for impact. We seem to have gone off course.” The Captain’s voice sounded calm, almost bored.

Nessa felt sick. There’s no way they’d been off course. Out her porthole, all Nessa could see was darkness and rocks. Where were the planets? Where was the sun? 

A large semi-spherical chunk of rock flew towards the ship. As it got closer, she could see the ruins of a city flying toward them. 

The Captain’s voice came back on, “Oh Gods! What have they done!” He was no longer calm.

Read Chapter 1 (Coming Soon)


While you wait for the next chapter, check out the previous serial stories:

The Death of Physical Media

Hello Friends,

Three or four years ago, a coworker told me he had a dozen boxes of DVDs in his basement that he wanted to get rid of. I thought he was kidding, but he said he could find everything through legal or piratey streaming so he didn’t care to keep the disks.

Since then, I’ve seen the decline in stores that sell it and a decline in studios that release them. Could anyone have believed ten years ago that Disney wouldn’t release the seasons of any Marvel TV show? Or that they wouldn’t release the sequel to Enchanted?

Maybe people aren’t like me. I like to rewatch things and I like to collect the things that make me happy. So maybe people are okay not owning their favourite movies.

I don’t judge, much, but it worries me on another level. What happens to the movies and shows that are never released and that a studio/streamer take off their system? HBO is doing that now and it means a whole lot of shows are only available by pirating them. What happens when that isn’t the exception, but the rule?

A large portion of silent films made in North America during the early 20th century are lost. The film burned or destroyed. Even more television shows from the mid 20th century are lost due to reusing tape, like many episodes of the original Doctor Who.

I worry that we may be entering a movie and television dark age, where we’ll find that more than half of the content is gone.

I worry that future historians won’t be able to tell the difference between Cocoon (which is impossible to find) and Goncharov.

Or maybe DVDs will go the way of the vinyl record.

What do you think?

Éric